Thursday, June 26, 2008

Tips for Grounding Step 1: Remember to do it.

We have this list of grounding tips that sits on our refrigerator. It always cracks me up because it seems at first glance like a list of how to ground your kids, but it’s really a list of ways for the parent to get more grounded (ie back in touch). It has stuff like deep breathing, counting backwards, taking a break, etc. The typical stuff. It sits there so I will remember to implement grounding skills. Sometimes. Now and then. Ever.

The fact is that when I am on I am on, and when I am off, it is nearly impossible for me to get myself back to a grounded place. I was thinking a lot about this yesterday when I was so grumpy. Writing about it helped get me over the hump of being actively insane, but the whole rest of the day I just felt spacey and not connected. I didn’t even know how to feel compassion for that, since at the time I was struggling just to stay in a sane place. Teething, tantrums, and trauma. Such fun.

Cultivating that awareness to ask the question: “Does this (thought/feeling/behavior) fit with my higher purpose?” sounds really easy. Like a theoretical diet. You know, you think about eating better and exercising and you create a whole big plan, and then when you start you feel hungry and tired and getting out of bed seems too hard and you forgot to go to the grocery and and and and and…. The diet is over before it started. Yes, theoretical implementation is easy. I have created a thousand plans and reminders for myself. I have yet to find one that really works on a consistent basis. Probably because I have a hard time using them consistently. Or sometimes starting them. Or remembering them in the moment.

Part of the problem is I still yearn for structure. Four years into this full time parenting gig, I still crave just a teensy bit of structure to my day. I still want that fictional quiet time in the afternoon and morning time to do yoga and meditate. Instead, there are diaper changes and spit up and upsets over toys being lost. And so my little routine gets all discombobulated and then I end up just going through the day, never feeling quite checked in with myself. I still can’t surf the wave of our days and let it all flow if I want to include any aspect of the day for my own recharge. If I ignore me, things go pretty well. Until I am exhausted after a few weeks of no me-time.

But, when I am on, I am on. So maybe the trick is to not fall off. Often.

And maybe to ground myself more often: “You are grounded as of this moment, young lady. March yourself into your room and don’t come out until you have taken 10 deep breaths. Good ones. NOW GO.”

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